On Thursday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced the conclusion of the construction of prototypes for the border wall.

The prototype phase, conducted in San Diego, will now move into a 30 to 60-day test and evaluation period for the finished products “to determine which wall design elements meets our needs,” the CBP announced.

“Border security contributes to our overall national security and relies on a combination of border infrastructure, technology, personnel, and partnerships,” said acting Deputy Commissioner Ron Vitiello.

“Border walls have proven to be an extremely effective part of our multi-pronged security strategy to prevent the illegal migration of people and drugs over the years. Specifically, walls are part of a border enforcement zone, which includes patrol roads, lights and surveillance technology. These border enforcement zones give our men and women of CBP the best possible conditions to maintain a safe and secure border.”

According to the CBP, the prototypes will be evaluated for:

  • Anti-breaching capabilities
  • Anti-climbing capabilities
  • Anti-digging capabilities
  • Impedance and denial of traffic
  • Safety for Border Patrol agents

The prototypes will help determine future design standards, as the evaluation will lead the CBP to identify “new designs or influences for new designs that will expand the current border barrier toolkit that CBP could use to construct a border wall system,” it was announced.

The full CBP statement may be read below:

CBP Completes Construction of Border Wall Prototypes
Release Date: October 26, 2017

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced today that construction for prototypes of the Border Wall has concluded in San Diego.

The prototype construction phase is complete. CBP will now test and evaluate the finished products, provided by industry, to determine which wall design elements meets our needs. This testing and evaluation period will last 30 to 60 days.

“Border security contributes to our overall national security and relies on a combination of border infrastructure, technology, personnel, and partnerships,” said acting Deputy Commissioner Ron Vitiello. “Border walls have proven to be an extremely effective part of our multi-pronged security strategy to prevent the illegal migration of people and drugs over the years. Specifically, walls are part of a border enforcement zone, which includes patrol roads, lights and surveillance technology. These border enforcement zones give our men and women of CBP the best possible conditions to maintain a safe and secure border.”

These prototypes will be evaluated on a variety of characteristics such as:

  • Anti-breaching capabilities
  • Anti-climbing capabilities
  • Anti-digging capabilities
  • Impedance and denial of traffic
  • Is it safe for BP agents

CBP is using an integrated Test and Evaluation (T&E) approach for evaluating the Border Wall’s contribution to the desired Impedance and Denial Capability. Developmental/technical T&E planning and execution is being conducted by Office of Acquisition, Systems Engineering Division, Systems Analysis and Evaluation Branch, and operational/mission T&E planning and execution is being conducted by Operations Support, Capabilities and Requirements Division, Land Systems Operational Test Authority. Together they will plan and execute T&E for the vendor-provided mockup and prototype designs.

The six companies that built the eight border wall prototypes in San Diego were:

Caddell Construction Co. (DE), LLC, Montgomery, Alabama.

Fisher Sand & Gravel Co., DBA Fisher Industries, Tempe, Arizona.

Texas Sterling Construction Co., Houston, Texas.

W. G. Yates & Sons Construction Company, Philadelphia, Mississippi.

KWR Construction, Inc., Sierra Vista, Arizona

ELTA North America Inc., Annapolis Junction, Maryland

Issued Jan. 25, Presidential Executive Order: Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements, states that “the [Department of Homeland Security] Secretary shall take steps to immediately plan, design and construct a physical wall along the southern border, using appropriate materials and technology to most effectively achieve complete operational control of the southern border.”

On March 17, CBP issued two Requests for Proposals to acquire conceptual wall designs with the intent to construct multiple prototypes. One RFP called for concrete wall design and the other RFP called for Other than Concrete wall design. Prototyping is an industry-tested approach to identify additional solutions when considering a new product or methodology. Through the construction of prototypes, CBP will partnered with industry to identify the best means and methods to construct a border wall.

The prototypes will inform future design standards which will likely continue to evolve to meet the U.S. Border Patrol’s requirements. Through the prototyping process, CBP may identify new designs or influences for new designs that will expand the current border barrier toolkit that CBP could use to construct a border wall system. The border barrier toolkit is based on USBP’s requirements.